Maryland’s Republican Gov. Larry Hogan signed an executive order Wednesday that will mandate that the state’s public school systems start after Labor Day. The order goes into effect in the fall of 2017.
“School after Labor Day is now the law of the land in Maryland,” Hogan said, according to video of the press conference. “This isn’t just a family issue, it’s an economic and safety issue.”
He said students in Baltimore County and Baltimore City will now be able to avoid having to sit in schools without air conditioners.
The proposal received immediate backlash from parents who said when school starts should be a local decision.
But Hogan has long argued that having students return to school after Labor Day will benefit the state’s resort areas.
Legislators questioned whether Hogan has the authority to mandate a school start date without the sign-off of the state’s General Assembly.
Under the executive order, school districts that want to start before Labor Day must receive special permission from the state. Schools must end their school year by June 15.
I don’t necessarily have a problem with this, but it means he can never say the words “local control” again. https://t.co/R39PESx6N5
— Greg Pinelo (@gregpinelo) August 31, 2016
A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.